Take This Personal
Join date: May 2005
83 IQ
What is a good way to fill the sound gap created when the guitarist drops out for a solo and just the bassist and drummer are playing rhythm? Is there any technique in particular any of the three can use? Because the biggest problem my band has right now is that when I hit the solo and the bass and drums are playing the rhythm (originally guitar was playing too) the power of the whole thing is sacrificed a little. If we could fix that it would be great. Thanks.

Join date: Sep 2005
176 IQ
have the bass play the exact part and if the lead guitar has distortion maybe put a little on the bass
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UG's Motivated Marine
Join date: Dec 2003
391 IQ
If you're recording, it shouldn't be a problem because you can record both parts and put them together. When it's live, it's a completely different story. You can either A)Pull a dumb move like Korn and have a second guitarist backstage and unseen or you can B) simply get another guitarist. It really isn't that difficult to find a guitarist as it is to find a bassist, drummer or even a good singer.
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Join date: Nov 2005
885 IQ
I'm in a three person band too, so I know what you mean. I guess that you should just make sure that everyone is turned up enough. The bass should be loud enough that when you cut out, the rythm will still be heard, but make sure also that your guitar is lowd enough that it is still the focus of the sound.

That's not a very good explanation, but listen to some songs by Black Flag and I think you'll see what I mean. They only had 1 guitarist, but when he soloed, it seemed like nothing was really lost in the sound.
The Nameless666
UG's Assistant Janitor
Join date: Jun 2004
418 IQ
you either have to get another guitarist, or get your bass player to invest in a bass distortion pedel, this will make the bass sound more like a rhythm guitar while you are doing your solos, thne it can just be turned off when the solo is done too sound normal again
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Exorcising my angels
Join date: Dec 2005
1,234 IQ
Or just either make the bass part more interesting or make your guitar part different. A lot of bands, esp. classic rock, only had one guitarist (The Who, Jimi Hendrix Experience, Led Zeppelin, etc.) and they kept "full" sounds. Another thing you might want to try is writing more riff-oriented music rather than chordal stuff.
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Dan Steinman
Registered User
Join date: Jan 2006
279 IQ
Fear not! A three piece band can definitely have a full sound. Players like stevie ray vaughn, jimi hendrix, and dick dale have HUGE sounds, and they play great in three-piece bands.

Fill out the bass part: Octaves, arpeggios, or any groove that kinda outlines the chords. And give the bass part motion! Like, the bass part in the Beatles' Taxman or Drive my Car or Can't Turn Me Loose (from the Blues Bros. movie, I don't know if they wrote it). All three great because they're driving, rhythmic, and fill out the sound.

Fill out the guitar part: Heavy strings, dude. You can get so much more output and sustain out of your guitar with a set of 11's or 12's, or at the very least 10's. And reverb. Why don't people use reverb any more? Sweetens, fattens, fills out your sound, extra sustain, extra punch... Also use double stops--thirds, fourths, you know. They're right in your reach when you're on a pentatonic scale. Oh and unison bends. Play fret X on the high E and with the same stroke bend up on fret X+3 of the B till the two strings ring in unison. Fills out bends nicely. You can bend double stops too.

Fill out the drums: Bring in the ride cymbal and/or hi-hats. Also, the drummer should help emphasize the dynamics of your solo: you know, play louder as tension builds, etc.

And do listen to Stevie Ray Vaugh, incredible full sound even in a trio. Peace out.
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2004
396 IQ
change the drum riff... add more power to it.
UG's Washburn Player
Join date: May 2005
368 IQ
crescendo (sp?) with the drums and bass leading inot the solo, wiht the guitar slightly fading out before ripping into the solo. or if the solo just comes in, have the drums play with the cymbals a bit for more fill, drums and bassist a bit louder, and have the bass play on a scale that naturally harmonizes the scale you are soloing off of, and keep the bassline moving. not sure if this helped at all. i played in a three piece for a bit but then we added a singer/rythym guitarist. then broke up haha. hope this works out for you.

Registered User
Join date: Apr 2005
222 IQ
you could get a loop pedal and record the rhythm part and go into you solo and play the loop
Rhinosaur Bones
Registered User
Join date: Sep 2004
89 IQ
^ That would be a cool idea.

I'm in a three piece, and often I'll either just turn up my volume/distortion for the solo, or the bass player will put on distortion. The only thing with that is, you still want to keep it fairly clean i.e. not have the bass distortion completely wipe out the guitar.
UG's Woodchuck
Join date: Nov 2005
379 IQ
Have the drummer hit lots of cymbols and have the bassist do a lot of stuff too. Last year at my high school arts expo (like a talent show but with art dislpays and stuff), a three-man band played and they had a guitar solo, and I think the only reason it worked was because the bassist. He was very good, did a lot of cool riffs and stuff, and the power of it all did not decrease at all during the solo.
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Join date: Nov 2003
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in a 3 piece the drums and bass have to fill in the sonic gap during a solo. a thing i have noiced is that during a solo the drummer might move more to the ride cymbal instead of the hi hat like is typical in a rock verse/chorus. the ride sounds a little more full than the hi-hat and that helps. also, dont just have the bassist play root notes of the chord progression. have him fill out the rest of the chord tones using an interesting rhythm. and the guitar could hold notes instead of just playing one at a time. so like the first note rings as you play the next note to give a fuller sound. there are many ways you can do it, just experiment.